Solemnity of the Most Holy Body & Blood of Christ | June 6, 2021
“Very bread, good shepherd, tend us, Jesu, of your love befriend us, You refresh us, you defend us, Your eternal goodness send us, in the land of life to see.”
Sequence, “Laud, O Zion”
Brothers and Sisters,
Have you ever wondered why we bother labeling and organizing time? After all, the minutes and hours will pass regardless of designation. Whether it’s the twenty-four hours that make our day, organized into the morning, afternoon, evening, and night, the seven days of the week, or the twelve calendar months of the year. All these provide a framework to hang hopes and offer guideposts for goals to deepen our ongoing understanding of how we are called to love and serve the Lord and one another. To that end, the passage of any day, month, season, or year should contain a balance of healthy activities, like daily time for prayer, work, and opportunities to relax and connect with our Lord and those we love. As days turn into months, lessons we’ve learned, books we’ve read, projects we’ve accomplished, new positive habits we’ve established, or the sins we aimed to eliminate are considered. Then when a dozen months are behind us, we can reflect on our personal growth as humans, family members, neighbors in our community and citizens in our nation, and as disciples of the Lord. Even if not fully satisfied, we should always see a difference in ourselves at the end of a year — the passage of time is an opportunity for transformation.
We are blessed that our church has always understood the power of highlighting and designating time, but if you’re like me, as a member of the Catholic faithful, you might wonder, “how many different years can we be in at the same time?” Good question; we are currently celebrating and participating in several! Including the liturgical year B, focused on Mark’s Gospel, the Year of Saint Joseph to end the pandemic, preparing for the World Meeting of Families on June 26, 2022, the Pope has proclaimed the Year of the Family (consider reading and reflecting on Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetita to get ready). And today, as we move along our path of life to offer us concrete ways to connect with the Lord and experience his never-ending light, OLPH, along with the Archdiocese of Baltimore, enters into the Year of the Eucharist!
A year set aside for every Catholic!
If you have been away from Mass for a while, welcome back – Jesus has been waiting patiently for you, and his Church is more complete when you are here. If you have been worshipping with us since OLPH reopened, we have been blessed by your presence. Whether you have been receiving Christ sacramentally in the Eucharist or offering a spiritual communion from home, Christ has been with you. The witness to this encounter expressed by your lives has made a difference in this world.
Over the next year, we encourage you to Encounter Christ in all the ways he is present in the Mass: the sacrament of the Eucharist, the assembly of God’s people, the sacred Word proclaimed, and the priest-celebrant. Keep an eye out for the many ways during this Year of the Eucharist that you can deepen your relationship with Christ, be encouraged to grow in faith with each other, bear witness to the Risen Lord, and be strengthened to serve him wherever you find yourself. Locally at OLPH, beginning June 16th, we look forward to the return of Eucharistic Adoration in the Good Shepherd Chapel weekly, from Wednesdays 9 am through Saturdays at 8 am, additionally the chapel will be open for personal prayer 24/7. If you would like to commit to an hour of Adoration, please reach out to us. and if you would like to gain after-hours access to the chapel, please fill out this FORM. To stay up to date with Year of the Eucharist events: text CHRIST2021 to 84576, visit www.archbalt.org/year-of-the-eucharist and OLPH parish email and at OLPHParish.org for updates.
This week, the Archbishop, along with our neighboring bishops, announced the resumption of the Sunday obligation, beginning on June 26-27, 2021. In this communication, they remind us that those who are ill, believe they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another contagious illness; those confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with severe underlying health conditions are not obligated. I encourage you to reach out to me if you have questions or concerns. As there are many numerous circumstances and situations, I also encourage you to trust your conscience. Whatever your personal circumstances, join me in prayer that soon, we can all be gathered around the altar in celebration of our wonderful God who feeds and nourishes us through the Eucharist.
St. Joseph, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.
Rev. Michael S. Triplett